Tonight's Santa Monica Critical Mass was one of the best I've been on. For some reason, more people showed up tonight than ever before. Maybe it was the fact that the weather has been perfect recently. It usually gets cold at night on the west side of LA, but recently it has been nice and warm. It is so nice to ride the streets of LA with hundreds of other cyclists. The streets feel so much safer that way.
Tonight's ride went through many of the usual favorite areas such as Main St., Abbott Kinney, the Venice Canals, and the Venice Circle. For the first time, though, the ride headed east on Rose Ave to preview the new bike lane that has been striped between Lincoln and Walgrove. It is so great to see new bike lanes showing up on the west side. It makes a big difference for cyclists in my opinion.
Usually I don't like when people bring loud sound systems on the ride, but tonight, it was okay since they played some mellow music that seemed to put everyone in a good mood. In fact, when some car drivers got frustrated with us, most of us just waved at them. It was such a better reaction than some times in the past where cyclists yelled back at the drivers.
The ride ended at an outdoor party at 10th and Michigan in Santa Monica. It was held in someone's mostly empty yard and there was plenty of tamales and beer.
My wife came on the ride tonight - her very first critical mass ride. She had a great time and was lucky to have chosen one of the largest rides as her first one. While some old-school funk music was playing from someone's bike stereo, she told me that she felt like we were in some kind of Quentin Tarantino bike gang.
Here is a picture from last month's ride. I am in there riding with a friend of mine. Can you find me?